Chapter 80

The Aftermath

When the results came in over the wires, there was skepticism everywhere.

"Some wise guy said the final score came in and Centre lost. That can't be true. When the right score comes in, let me know."

Meanwhile, in the Centre locker room, Bo asked that the reporters listen to what he had to say.

"I have been credited many times for winning games for Centre. I want to take credit again, but this time for losing one. It was all my fault. Certainly Texas A&M played well, and we want to give them all of the credit that they deserve. But the simple fact is that it was my play which lost this game, and I accept the responsibility."

Was Bo correct? While not one player offered any excuses, in analyzing the loss, George Joplin wrote a story for the Louisville "Herald" which tried to make some sense about what everyone considered a great upset.

It was obvious that playing a big game on the 18th day of a road trip was a factor.

Nothing tires a person like living out of a suitcase, often cooped up in a Pullman for days on end.

The lack of regular workouts was also a contributor.

The Colonels' offense depended on perfect timing, and perfect timing depended on constantly running drills that kept refining the plays until there was no margin for error.

Staying at the Adolphus may have been a mistake, especially with all of the celebrations ushering in the New Year. Certainly the almost monastic existence of the Aggies contrasted with the surroundings in which the Colonels found themselves.

However, it must be remembered that the trip to the West was a reward for an excellent season, and the Centre staff felt that the team deserved to be maintained in wonderful hotels like the del Coronado and Adolphus.

Bo's wedding was a contributor. His mind obviously had to be pre-occupied with more than football, and his play seemed to reflect that.

There was the matter of over-confidence. Any team naturally looks at what their opponents have done in prior games, in order to gauge their strength. The Colonels wouldn't have been human if they hadn't underestimated Texas A&M. The Aggies had struggled to beat Arizona on their own field in College Station.

Centre had so overwhelmed the Arizonians that the Colonels had to take into consideration the Aggies' close call when they were mentally preparing for the game.

Jop, in his article wired back home, failed to bring up another factor, and that was the injury early in the game to Red Roberts. Anytime the big fellow was less than totally fit, it became obvious just how important he was to his team's success. It was almost, "As goes Red, so goes Centre."

There was the issue of the crowd. Most of the times that the Colonels had played on the road, at least early on, they were embraced by their opponent's fans because everyone loves an underdog, or everyone loves the little, smaller school, even if "David," or the underdog, is playing their own team.

The Colonels were no longer underdogs. Unlike at Cambridge or even New Orleans, in Dallas there was no sentiment other than the desire for the home team to win, and fully 99% of the spectators were pulling for the boys from Texas A&M. Fan support is important, and the Texans were great fans.

But in the final analysis, the reason that the Aggies beat the Colonels, is that they played hard, they took advantage of the breaks they were given like a good team should, and they deserved to win because they were a talented group of dedicated young men.

Coach Bible had done an excellent job. His was no weak team, as proven by its record over the past few years.

The Aggie coach, when interviewed after the game, said, "The men went into the game with the spirit of self-sacrifice and won. They played a wonderful game, and I am proud of their showing."

Uncle Charlie was gracious in defeat. He told the reporters that, "A&M played a great game and deserved to win."

And he added, quite sincerely, "If my team had to lose, I would rather lose to Texas A&M than any team in the country."

After the game, the team attended a banquet at the Oriental Hotel given by the Dallas A&M Alumni Association for the Cadet Corps and the two teams.

Oriental Hotel

Tyree Bell of the Alumni Club announced at the banquet that the organization was going to present gold footballs with a diamond with the inscription "Southern Champions" to each member of the team. It must be wondered if it wasn't a hastily reached decision after the euphoria of the victory as the term "Southern Champions" could only have been claimed after the game had recently ended. Also, there is a good possibility that the Colonels had been seen wearing their chains with gold footballs and a diamond presented after the win over Harvard and the Dallas A&M alumni club had felt that it had to match the gesture as a reward for their team. 

Hump Tanner spoke for the Colonels when he stood and told the large crowd how much his team respected the Aggies, "for their hard play, for their sportsmanship, and we appreciate the alumni of the school for their kindness, and lastly, we thank the citizens of Dallas for all of the hospitality shown to each of us during our stay here in Texas."

It was 3 cheers for Texas A&M, 3 cheers for Centre, and finally, 3 cheers for Dallas.

Then it was off to the Union Terminal for an 8:00 P.M. departure, heading back to Kentucky.

Headlines all across the country announced the results of the game in the morning papers as the Colonels headed back to Danville after the epic journey. 

Headlines in papers after the game including mention of the California-Washington and Jefferson scoreless tie in the Rose Bowl